Day 140: Trudge

Today is just a one-foot-in-front-of-the-other kind of day.

I’ve yanked down another twenty books–I’ve cleared half of the bookshelf I wanted to empty out…and with each book I take town, the harder it gets.

I also tackled another closet–a mish-mash of crafts, puzzles, games, and housewares. A good portion of the junk in there went straight into the trash. The remainder: off to the (now enormous) pile of donation goods that will be leaving the house at week’s end.

There’s nothing audacious or uplifting about this part of the process I’m working through. It’s just trudging along, one step after the other.

I’m not exactly sure why I’m thinking of Emerson’s essay “Circles” as I write this blog post, except maybe as a testimony to the fact that any “achievement” is really nothing more than a waypoint in an ongoing journey. But since I could use a little philosophy after such a mundane day of clean-up, here’s my favorite passage, from the close of the essay:

The one thing which we seek with insatiable desire is to forget ourselves, to be surprised out of our propriety, to lose our sempiternal memory and to do something without knowing how or why; in short to draw a new circle. Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. The way of life is wonderful. It is by abandonment.

As I reread this passage, I’m forced to ask myself: in all of this de-cluttering and simplifying, am I getting too caught up in the “chore” of it all, or am I still embracing this process as a large scale “letting go”?

Or to put it another way: can I continue to trudge along this road and still maintain enthusiasm?

A good question indeed!

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3 Responses to Day 140: Trudge

  1. revdarkwater says:

    I’m reminded of a Nicaraguan saying, “Traveler, there are no paths. Paths are made by walking.”

  2. Julie Buhite says:

    Thanks much for this link, Mark. “The way of life is wonderful. It is by abandonment.” I love this. And isn’t abandonment, enthusiasm and forgetting ourselves the stuff of passion? Emerson sounds like a really cool dude.

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